Seeing where Hollywood's movie magic is created sounds like a great idea—until you find yourself kicking around a backlot in Burbank. Casablanca may have taken the Oscar for Best Picture of 1943, but Bogart's fedora was never coated by Moroccan dust. Nonetheless, intrepid travelers looking for a little celluloid inspiration have better options than Universal Studios's Backdraft exhibit. Instead, imagine yourself Range Rover-ing about the Scottish countryside where this year's nominee The Queen was shot, or inhaling actual Moroccan dust while touring the ancient desert town of Ouarzazate, where parts of the 2000 winner Gladiator were filmed. (We decided against trying to re-create Babel's plotline of tourists getting shot in the Moroccan dust.) Look to our list of real locations behind current Oscar nominees and past winners so you can start making some magic of your own. And don't forget the camera.
Planning an Oscars bash? Look for recipes, drink ideas, and party tips at our sister site Epicurious.com.
And don't forget to see the best (and worst) fashions from the red carpet on Style.com.